(4.0) For me, more readable and thus more enjoyable than Neuromancer
But I still had the problem with the Gibson style. Just something about it makes it hard to read smoothly. Keep having to go back and re-read sections to decipher things, just to keep the plot straight (is that part of the attraction for some hacker types?).
A few other quibbles. Here there's a little more of the 80s adolescent fascination with Japan, but much less so than I've seen elsewhere (and Neuromancer), so at least by 2002, he's finally growing up a little. ;) Early on the distaste (or rather revulsion) of Western brands feels a little like adolescent rejection of what-the-cool-kids-like as well.
But get beyond that and there's a cool plot here. Who's making the segments of footage? Why? Do they cohere in some way? Is there a hidden message? What's coincidence, and what's conspiracy? Enjoyed the hunt far more than the revelation (actually, fairly disappointing and felt like it didn't fit with the novel's trajectory all that well...but at least that bit was quick and done with in just the last couple of chapters). I also appreciated Gibson's attempt to write about the real world, present time (now, the past--which actually shows a bit: iBook etc.) Definitely good enough that I'll at least read Spook Country at some point.
Minor flaw: (view spoiler)[Think there's a little flaw in the watermarking idea. There was no need to watermark the footage. ANY copy of the footage, whether from original digital form or not, would be considered dissemination of the original works. Or am I missing something huge there? Seemed the Sigil steganography was completely unnecessary and just a convenient way for Cayce to find the trail to stella and nora (hide spoiler)]
But I'm willing to overlook it. Oh one more: (view spoiler)[Unless I misunderstood, Cayce was able to avoid keystroke tracking software from submitting back to home base just by tethering to her cell phone? Bogus. (hide spoiler)]
Bad research, but has no real overall effect.["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>